How can I stop my partner ruining me financially?

Dear James,

My partner has run up £9,000 in catalogue debt in my name without my knowledge. We agreed to take out a secured loan to pay the debt but now she is having an affair, refusing to move out unless I buy her out, which I cannot do, or pay any bills and is running up more debt in her own name. How can I stop her ruining me financially?

Paul, Bradford

Dear Paul,

It sounds like you’ve been through a pretty rough time of things recently - and that’s probably the understatement of the year! But although you clearly have some difficult challenges ahead, there is always a way forward so please don’t despair. Your options could include trying to resolve your relationship issues through counselling, getting a Time Order to restructure your current debts while you try to sort things out or even getting expert advice about selling your home. I can’t give you specific advice on these issues but I can recommend organisations such as Relate, ShelterCitizens Advice and National Debtline, all of which I’m sure could help you find an acceptable and appropriate way to move forwards. Should you and your partner do decide to break-up permanently, once all financial links have been severed you can then request a financial disassociation with the three credit reference agencies. This will mean that your credit reports will no longer be linked together, so then your future credit rating will be unaffected by hers, and vice versa. I hope you manage to find a satisfactory solution. (December 2013) 

James
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